Take heed, Saskatchewan Roughriders: It takes only four years to build a CFL champion from the ground up. And you can win with an old quarterback!
The Ottawa Redblacks proved that with their 39-33 victory Sunday over the Calgary Stampeders in one of the most entertaining Grey Cup games ever.
Ottawa general manager Marcel Desjardins and head coach Rick Campbell built their winning team from scratch, helped by a fair expansion draft and some good recruiting. As a three-year-old franchise it appeared in – and lost – last year’s Grey Cup.
This time, 41-year-old quarterback Henry Burris improved upon last year’s performance to defeat a team that won 15 times during the regular season.
Next year will be the fourth since Saskatchewan won the 2013 Grey Cup. To get back on top the Riders could put forward a respectable contract offer to re-sign quarterback Darian Durant, who will be 35 next season. Add some good recruits plus a solid managerial plan and, maybe, it becomes a winning formula.